Cl  agaynesagayneʒ

'against, upon'

(Modern English against)


A native formation on agayn + adverbial -es from the OE str. masc. and neut. gen. ending.

PGmc Ancestor


Proposed ON Etymon (OIcel representative)

(í) gegn 'in opposition, against, in return'
(ONP gegn (1) (sb.))

Other Scandinavian Reflexes

Far ígen, Icel gegn, Dan igen, OSw gen

OE Cognate

on-gegn, on-gēan  'against'; cp. ongegnes 'against'

Phonological and morphological markers

Summary category



As with agayn, spellings reliably representing /ɡ/ are rare in the South and West until c. 1400, but are normal in the Chaucer citations in MED and become increasingly frequent in southern texts thereafter.

Occurrences in the Gersum Corpus

Pe 79; Cl 611, 1711


MED ayẹ̄n(e)s (prep.) , OED against (prep., conj., adv. and n.) , HTOED ; Bj. 151, de Vries gegn, Mag. gegn (2), Orel *ʒaʒnē, AEW gegn (2)